Sunday, May 10, 2009

Enneagram Misidentifications - Type 6


In this article, I will try to clear up some of the differences between Enneagram Type Six and the rest of the Enneagram types respectively. The comparison tables will be subject to modifications and additions as more information reveals itself.

I hope it will be a useful tool for people who have trouble mistyping or aren't sure of their type - I'm one of them too.

6 and 1

Mistyping frequency: rarely (6w5 can resemble 1s).

Six
Self-doubting
Indecisive
Ambivalent
Reactive
Anxious
Suspicious of others
Temperamental
Seek security
Affliative
Looks to authority
One
Self-confident
Decisive
Certain
Contained
Angry
Indignated by others
Controlled
Seek perfection
Independent
Becomes an authority


6 and 2


Mistyping frequency: often (usually 6s mistype as 2s)

Six
Seek support
Playful and silly
Unsure
Want independence
Reactive
Ambivalent
Look to authority
Become dependent
Self-doubting
Two
Seek love
Loving and helpful
Sure of self
Need merging
Manipulative
Positive feelings
Become authority
Make others dependent
Self-assured


6 and 3


Mistyping frequency: rarely (stressed out 6s somewhat resemble 3s).

Six
Avoid the spotlight
Security
Dependable
Nervous
Endearingly awkward
Visible insecurity
Emotionally intense
Reactive
Pessimistic
Three
Want the spotlight
Success
Impressive
Composed
Admirably smooth
Confident appearance
Emotionally reserved
Cool
Optimistic


6 and 4


Mistyping frequency: sometimes (usually individualistic 6s mistype as 4s).

Six
Ambiverted
Affiliative
Performers
Relate to tradition
Politically inclined
Common values
Bonding
Seek security
Loyal & reliable
Anxiety-prone
Four
Introverted
Loners
Creators
Ignore tradition
Politically neutral
Personal truth
Reclusive
Seek ideal love
Different & sensitive
Fantasy-prone


6 and 5


Mistyping frequency: sometimes (6w5 and sp 5s tend to resemble each other)

Six
Relate to tradition
Consider rules
Linear thinking
Establish methods
Practical
Doubt their minds
Reactive
Affiliative
Seek security
Paranoid
Engaged
Group-oriented
Five
Eccentric
Ignore rules
Non-linear thinking
Contest methods
Impractical
Trust their minds
Aloof
Independent
Seek knowledge
Schizoid
Detached
Individualist


6 and 7


Mistyping frequency: sometimes (6w7 and 7w6 can resemble each other)

Six
Pessimistic
Self-doubting
Responsible
Seek guidelines
Aware of authority
Commited
Negative
Duty
Worrying
Seven
Optimistic
Self-confident
Forgetful
Reject guidelines
Ignore authority
Flighty
Upbeat
Freedom
Diverting


6 and 8


Mistyping frequency: sometimes (usually couterphobic 6s think they are 8s)

Six
Reactive
Anxious
Unsure
Ambivalent
Self-doubting
Need protection
Feel pressured
Irrational outbreaks
Contradictory
Give in
Volatile
Hesitant
Eight
Strategic
Powerful
Willful
Certain
Self-assured
Offer protection
Pressure others
Lucid anger
Consistent
Resist
Grounded
Forceful


6 and 9


Mistyping frequency: often (stressed out 9s can resemble 6s)

Six
Suspicious
Agitated
Worrying
Magnify problems
Vent feelings
React
Intolerant
Negative
Engaged
Complicated
Irritable
Nine
Trusting
Easy-going
Unperturbed
Ignore problems
Hide feelings
Withdraw
Accepting
Positive
Disengaged
Uncomplicated
Serene




3 comments:

Jeff Siegel said...

I still struggle with being confident that I have correctly typed myself as a six, because I strongly resonate with many four qualities (introspection, romanticized lonliness, amplifying emotions for a thrill, identity derived from being different) Perhaps this pervasive, lingering doubt about my type is laughably sixish. I'm pretty sure I have a five wing, but this doesn't help regarding the 4/6 split. And, I "understand" the seven, even though I am manifestly not a seven. I subscribe to a "dual wing" interpretation of the Enneagram, and this would help me confirm my place between 5 and 7, which is....Six. I think compulsively, and I can get trapped in paranoid ideation, which is grounded in recognition that doubt is an essential philosophical tool, perhaps the most potent, but mentally crippling, when it becomes compulsive. It takes courage to employ radical doubt, without being destroyed by it, or succumbing to hysterical, reaction-formation type, security belief structures. I just want to emphasize that I doubt spontaneously, it's my nature. And yet,I also, attempt to express authoritative knowledge, often with conviction, when I am able to relax.
So looking at what I've just written, I gotta say, "sure sounds Sixish"


Anyway, I don't mean to blather, I just found your blog, and felt like posting something. I'd be happy to listen to any response anyone may have.

INTP said...

Hi Jeff.

I know what you mean – typing oneself can be difficult sometimes. I’ve spent two years trying to settle with one type, because of some influences I have from other Enneagram points.

Being doubtful about one’s type is not always a Six trait – even some Enneagram specialists have been known to change it and question it at some point, but it does happen to head types (5,6,7) more often, perhaps because of their tendency to think excessively about things.

Sixes and Fours can get mixed up easily (especially with Intuitive types in Myers Briggs). Intuition confers a certain inclination towards fantasy and abstract ideation and the fact that type Six is often described as being practical and down-to-earth can add to this confusion. But Intuitive can as well be Sixes.

If you can decide whether you belong to the Head triad or the Feeling triad, your problem is virtually solved. If you identify more with types 5,6 and 7 than with 2,3 and 4, this is a strong argument that you are a Head type – and thus probably a Six. You can add up the scores from a test or you can start reading about all these types and decide – or both.

Head types tend to overthink – their minds heat up and fill up with ideas and questions and plans for the future. They’re basically fearful so their first reaction to an unpleasant event is to experience anxiety and very often have trouble falling asleep because of their many thoughts. All of them like debating, and have an intellectual manner of speaking – 6s and 5s often seem to be giving a disertation (and can go on and on about a subject in a passionate manner) while 7w6 and 6w7 usually talk extremely fast and show a lot of nervous energy.

Feeling types are more into their image so they’re very aware of how they present themselves to others. Fours prefer to appear special, unusual, deep and romantic. Their feelings run deep and they love having strong emotions and are not afraid of even the most painful of them. Their main trait is melancholy: so whenever things don’t go well, they love to indulge in long melancholic dreams instead of facing the world. They tend to become depressed, but their depression is usually focused on romantic disappointments (as opposed to Fives’ existential depression or Sixes’ worrying about their future and security).

Of course there is so much to talk about on this subject. If you want to, you can e-mail me and we’ll discuss it more.

Jed said...

Hmm. I'm sorry if this doesn't really relate to your post, but if it helps, this post helped me affirm that I am a 4w5 and not a 9w1, a distinction I was not sure about. And all through comparisons with 6s.